Aussie accents and banter - Daniel Ricciardo is ready for a break

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Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo is going to savour "Aussie accents and banter" during the Formula One off-season after a demanding 2016 campaign.

With a record 21 grands prix on the calendar this year, Ricciardo says "it's definitely felt like that the last couple of races".

The Australian finished third in the drivers' standings behind Mercedes duo Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton, but says he will be glad of a break when it arrives.

"It's not long until I'm back home now, and I can't wait," he told redbull.com. "It's little things that I get to experience again in the off-season that make me realise why I love being home when I can be.

"My mates treating me like an idiot, basically, just being one of the boys. Aussie accents and banter.

"My mates still giving me heaps about not being able to tighten a bolt even though I'm driving the most sophisticated race cars in the world. Give me a set of spanners, and I'm hopeless.

"And walking around in no shoes in an Aussie summer! Get up, singlet on, swim shorts, no shoes, done.

"Super, super low-key. Makes me feel like I'm at home and on holiday, and I'm definitely hanging out for that."

Reflecting on his performance this season, Ricciardo added: "I finished third in 2014 of course and won three times that year and just once this time, but this year's third feels better, feels more convincing. Feels more sustainable too.

"2014, it was hard to fault that, but this year I felt like I did everything I did in '14, but at a higher level when I really pushed myself."